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    Karzai for unanimous fatwa on suicide attacks

    KABUL (PAN): President Hamid Karzai on Wednesday urged religious scholars across the Muslim world to join their Saudi Arab colleague in slamming suicide attacks as haram (prohibited in Islam) and illegitimate by declaring a unanimous fatwa, his spokesman said.

     “He (a suicide bomber) claims to be a mujahid (holy warrior) in the name of Allah, but he is not. He is fighting in the name of the devil who has tempted him and convinced him” to carry out the attack, said Sheikh Saleh al-Fawzan, a top Saudi cleric was reported as saying on Friday by a Saudi newspaper.

    He slammed suicide attacks by martyrdom-seekers as devilish acts that did not qualify as jihad. “A Muslim is prohibited from killing himself,” the member of the Saudi supreme council of Islamic scholars said in a lecture in Riyadh, according to Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper. He said acts of violence branded as jihad, or Muslim holy war, were nothing more than “sabotage.”

    Karzai, who arrived in Cairo from London late on Tuesday, made the appeal during his address to participants of the 12th Organisation of Islamic Cooperation summit that began on Wednesday, Aimal Faizi told Pajhwok Afghan News from Cairo.

    He quoted Karzai as arguing that mosques, seminaries and other sacred places were being blown up and young boys turned into human bombs in the name of Islam, referring to suicide attacks in his country involving teenagers.

    Islamic scholars across the Ummah should decide to follow in the Saudi scholar's footsteps, said Karzai, who asked OIC members to join hands in addressing the root causes of terrorism and extremist in their countries.

    The president said Afghanistan and Pakistan were victims of terrorism which needed real and sincere cooperation to be overcome.